Yes that's right - 40 garlic cloves, about four heads of garlic! Try to use large, plump. fresh heads. Best-ever chicken guaranteed! After two hours of slow roasting ,the chicken is fragrant and melt-in-the-mouth tender, and the roasted cloves of garlic are a sublime spread on toasted crusty bread. This aromatic provencale dish cooks the garlics to a soft puree that is sweet, nutty and socially acceptable the morning after. My family have been enjoying this for years, and they think I put a lot of work into it. But instead for two hours you can put your feet up!
- WASH and clean the inside cavity of each chicken, and pat dry with absorbent paper.
- Rub oil over each chicken. Season each generously with salt and pepper, using your hands to rub the seasoning thoroughly over the chicken.
- Tuck the wing tips under the chicken, place a few lemon slices inside the cavity of each chicken, followed by sprigs of herbs.
- Tie the legs together with kitchen string.
- Place the chickens side by side in a deep casserole dish (one with a tight fitting lid).
- See note:
- Twist the central stalk of the garlic heads to loosen the cloves, rub away any loose papery skin but don't peel the cloves.
- Sprinkle cloves around the chickens, add remaining lemon slices and sprigs of herbs, and drizzle with extra olive oil.
- Note: If you do not have a tight fitting lid use sealing paste.
- TO MAKE SEALING PASTE blend flour with combined oil and water to form a dough-like paste. With your fingers, spread the paste around the edge of the casserole dish and gently press the lid over the paste.
- COOK the chicken in a moderately slow 160c oven for 2 hours. Do not remove the lid.
- A green salad is all you need as an accompaniment.